PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Made In America festival kicks off as planned on Saturday. But a massive cleanup effort is still underway on the Vine Street Expressway in Center City after historic flooding this week.Amtrak Forced To Reduce Service Along Northeast Corridor Due To COVID-Related Staffing Shortage
Crews were successful in getting the water pumped out of 676 between Broad Street and 76, but it will still be closed today in both directions until the cleanup is complete. There’s now a thick sludge, basically, a river basin left behind that they now have to clean.
While the water may be gone, the city says it could still take days before this roadway is open. Not only do they have to clear the sludge, but they also have to make sure the roadway wasn’t damaged.
The race is on to get the roadway opened because the Made in America festival starts later Saturday afternoon.
The two-day event already shut down the Ben Franklin Parkway, which crippled street traffic.
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Good news! Floodwaters have been cleared from the Vine Street Expressway. Now crews are working to clear sludge and doing safety inspections before the highway can reopen @CBSPhilly pic.twitter.com/6MgGF63VX0
— Howard Monroe (@HMonroeNews) September 4, 2021
The expressway being closed isn’t helping at all. The organization behind the concert says over the last decade it’s brought in over $135 million dollars in revenue to the city, employed thousands of city residents, and hosted 75 local food vendors and organizations.
There are still ongoing flooding issues nearby, so for people coming into the city from the suburbs, the city is encouraging you to use mass transit. SEPTA is adding an additional late-night train service.
As for the people who live nearby, they were kind of indifferent about the show going on.
“I don’t know if it would’ve done any good to cancel it,” Lauren Meltzer, a resident who lives nearby, said. “Some people are suggesting that that would’ve been a more sensitive approach, but I don’t know if it would’ve done any good to cancel it.”
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